Hungary completed its most successful world championships ever, Iran won its first gold medal, and 30 countries shared medals as the 2022 ICF Junior and U23 Canoe Sprint World Championships came to an end in Szeged, Hungary, on Sunday.

The host nation picked up another four gold medals on the final day to finish with 21, and a record-breaking 39 medals in total. Poland with seven gold and 14 medals overall finished second, while Germany with four gold and 13 overall took third position.

Gold medals were shared among four countries in the four Olympic-distance events contested on Sunday, with Spain, Poland, Portugal and Italy taking victories in the women’s junior and U23 K1 500 races and the junior and U23 C1 200 events.

Portugal’s only gold medal for the championships came in the women’s junior C1 200, with Beatriz Fernandes finishing over the top of Hungarian Agnes Kiss to snatch the gold in her fourth final of the week.

“I really can’t believe this, I’m very tired because I’ve done four races, which is very complicated,” Fernandes said.

“But in the end I am happy. This distance is the Olympic distance, so it is a good result for the future. We don’t win a lot of medals, so this is very important.”

Italy’s Sara Del Gratta also had a busy race program, and finally broke through for gold in the women’s junior K1 500 after a series of near misses. An emotional Del Gratta said she was worried she would finish the week without a gold.

“I have done a lot of races, so today has been incredible for me, I can’t believe it,” Del Gratta said.

“This means a lot. Before the race I did not think I could win today, but I felt strong. In the middle I could see I was first or second. This is the most important race I’ve done all week because it is the Olympic race.”

Spain Antia Jacome Szeged 2022

Poland’s sixth gold medal of the championships came in the women’s U23 K1 500, Helena Wisniewska adding the world title to the European gold she won earlier in the week.

Spain’s Antia Jacome enjoyed a fruitful Sunday, winning the women’s C1 U23 200 final and then teaming up with Diego Dominguez to win Spain the mixed C2 500 title racing from lane one.

“It’s been an incredible day,” Jacome said.

“It was a perfect race and an incredible feeling. Now I’m a double world champion. In the mixed I couldn’t see anyone else, so I had no idea where we were.”

In non-Olympic events, Mohammad Nabi Rezaei won Iran’s first ever U23 world championship gold with a commaning performance in the men’s U23 C1 5000. Nabi broke from the field shortly before the half way mark of the race and was not challenged on his way to the finish.

“I’m so happy that I was able to get this gold medal, the first one for my country,” Nabi said.

Denmark’s Thorbjorn Rask won an adventure-packed men’s U23 K1 5000 final, even slowing down the field at one stage to allow his training partner Hamish Lovemore to catch up after the South African missed a buoy and had to backtrack.

“There were a lot of boats so my plan was to be up at the front from the start,” Rask said.

“When I saw Hamish miss the buoy I thought I won’t go full speed so he could have a chance to catch up, so we could have a fair race. But I think when he caught up again he was too tired.

“I could have easily gone harder, but we have trained together for the last three weeks, so I thought we must have a fair race and it would be fun if he could get back.”

Hungarian Adam Varga came out on top in the final match-up with Australian Tom Green, winning the men’s K1 500 U23 final by 0.11 seconds.

Hungary took out the Nations Cup award, ahead of Spain and Germany. The hist nation finished with 12 gold in the junior competition, and nine golds in the U23.


C1 WOMEN 200 U23

  1. JACOME Antia      (ESP)  37
  2. SHUAI Changwen (CHN) 92
  3. JENSEN Sophia (CAN)  06

K1 WOMEN 500 U23

  1. WISNIEWSKA Helena (POL)  1:51.93
  2. RENDESSY Eszter (HUN) 1:52.85
  3. BRIONES Beatriz (MEX)  1:53.35


  1. FERNANDES Beatriz (POR)  76
  2. KISS Agnes (HUN)  05
  3. CALDERON Mailienys (CUB) 20


  1. DEL GRATTA Sara      (ITA) 1:55.35
  2. SIDOVA Bianka      (SVK) 1:56.16
  3. HERMANUSSEN Finja (GER) 1:57.02

Pics by Bence Vekassy

  1. Iran Mohammad Nabi Rezaei
Canoe Sprint
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